Deck Upcycle – I Wish!

From the Desk of Clearissa Coward’s Command Center

Deck Upcycle – Oh How I Wish

I wish I could get to my deck. Winter hung on and on and on this year! And now that the temperature is cooperating, the pollen is ridiculous. I was hoping and actually believed that winter had hung around so long, that once it was finally done, we would be past all of the pollen! Not!!! It seems to be just the opposite. Actually it p thas since the trees had to wait so long to pollinate they are angry and we have a mess! The pollen is so thick some days, it looks like snow. That is not a good look for me because, as I have said before, I am asthmatic and I have very bad allergies. So the pollen and I do not get along and I can’t really get outside to do anything until the pollen has had its way. So as I wait *sigh* and wait *sigh* for pollen to allow me outside, I decided to show you what I would be doing if I could and will be doing when I can. 🙂 I can’t wait. But alas, I have to wait if I want to breathe.  So come with me as I show you what I wish I were doing and what I normally do when weather and mother nature permit. This was a couple of years ago and that year, we had a totally different spring. You never know what to expect weatherwise in NC. I’m not sure if I’ll use the same colors but believe me, it will be colorful when I can get going on this year’s deck upcycle. 

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Here in NC, we have had a very wet spring. It’s been raining off and on since March and we could not get outside to get set up for summer.But recently, we had a few consecutive dry days and we finally got it done. Well, at least it’s half done. The deck upcycle 2016 has begun. Understand, there will be pillows added, possibly more plants and citronella mason jar burners that I’m making myself but I am so happy to have the deck power washed and the gazebo up.

Although we haven’t had any flooding like Texas, we needed to power wash and seal our deck and as you know, you need dry days and a few of them to do all that. I am happy to announce, We finally got er done! With all of the moisture, there were still some dark spots left after the power washing but Mister promised he would go at it again this fall. For now, we wanted to enjoy our deck and have a Bar-b-q. 🙂

One note about the power washing. The power washer didn’t totally do the trick with one try, but we will need to add some sort of cleanser this fall because if the power washer is too powerful, it will splinter the wood and you don’t want that. File that way somewhere because once you splinter the wood all sorts of bad stuff can set in and you can no longer walk barefoot on your deck. J Mister found a cleaner at Lowes and we will add it to the process when we clean again this fall. Remember to ask me if it worked.


We also did not add a tinted sealer or stain. Instead, we used a clear coat to allow the natural wood to show through and to not have a lot of extra work every year to keep the wood stained. I actually love the look of natural wood, when it’s clean so we really have to work on it.

Putting Things in Place

My two favorite guys worked hard but of course, they took some time to play as well. I have to admit, watching them work/play together is fun for me. But we had to remain on track. We had work to do. Tote that bar and lift that bail. 🙂 Can you tell from the picture below who was the worker bee and who was giving orders? Yep, that’s right the 4-year old honestly thought he knew what he was doing.

Deck Upcycle

Once the got the gazebo up, it was my turn to get in there and add a few little touches. As with the house, I had to add more yellow. I don’t know what I’m going through with the yellow but just work with me. J Out here I didn’t just add yellow, I also incorporated the orange from last year and it worked out ok. After all, it should be bright and cheery…right?

Once everything was cleaned with awesome and the cushions were vacuumed, I set the table. Simple with the orange and yellow chargers, but I was disappointed that the clear plates disappeared in the pictures. They are there. I hope you can see it in the second picture. I am going to have to add colored pictures. How do you guys feel about updates? I hope you like them because you just may get one to this article.

Adding the Summer Sizzle

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The hanging chandelier was a thrift find. It was rusty and not very attractive, but I think the paint job works for my rustic, tree house style deck. The rug under the table has been around for 2 years. If I find one that stands out a bit more and doesn’t blend into the wood, I will replace it as well. But for now, it feels good under the feet and defines the area.

Next, I moved flower pots around and added our pepper, mint and strawberry plants to the roses, Deck Upcyclehostas and confederate jasmine. Because our deck area is sort of in the trees, we don’t have much luck with blooming flowers because there isn’t enough sun. Believe me, I’ve tried. I do have sedum in pots on both sides of the door and it blooms and the jasmine blooms for a short time as well so I have to add color with pillows and other accessories.

So the deck/treehouse is coming along and ready for our first bar-b-q of the season. Or a chilled glass of wine or a cold beer after a hard day at the office. And the more I sit, the more I can see other things I want to do.

Adding Thrifted Items

I added two sets of stools last year. Both sets were thrifted and I painted and reupholstered them. They are a great, added seating and I love the love. There are two of each but the other tall one was sitting in an opposite corner of the gazebo. If you want to see how the stools were upcycled you can find it here.  

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The Treehouse Affect

Deck UpcycleThis is my fragrant confederate jasmine. It lights up the entire deck area with a sweet summer smell. It is 5 years old and  doing quite well in this pot.

We love this area. I have mentioned several times that it feels like being in a tree house and this view allows you to see all of the trees. This space helped sell this house when I was looking. Are you wondering what that bag is hanging from the gazebo? Well, it’s a zip lock bag with pennies and water in it. It repels flies. I have one bag hanging on two sides of the deck and it works.

Deck Upcycle

You can see at the end of the deck that our small yard is fenced and natural with stepping stones and no grass. There are azaleas and roses planted there. I was so excited about the deck that I forgot to get pictures of the yard. But suffice it to say, it’s a cute little space as well. Hostas are planted and there are a couple of pots with rose bushes as well.  Below you can get a peak of the yard. You can even see the water hose wreath hanging on the fence. There’s another on the door of the shed.

Deck Upcycle

And there you have it. My work-in-progress deck. What are you working on the outside right now? And I love your input, what do you think I should add to our tree house for the summer?

Deck Upcycle

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8 thoughts on “Deck Upcycle – I Wish!

  1. suz says:

    re: zip lock bag with pennies and water in it. It repels flies.
    oooohh, tell me MORE – there must be great science or at least a great story or folklore behind it. and will it work in ohio? i never had a problem w/flies until last summer, and i guessed it must have been because we had the mildest winter ever right before that. thanks for any info. and thanks also for the powerwashing tips. your back yard looks lush and lovely. –suz in ohio

  2. Clearissa Coward says:

    Hi Suz,

    Yes, pennies in a ziplock bag. A friend passed this tip on to me and I tried it. Of course, I was skeptical because I had never heard of it before, but low-and-behold, it did seem to work. We even ate outside several times without being bothered. I don’t know the science but it worked. I placed a bag on 6 sides of the gazebo and I was pleasantly surprised. Living in NC, we are tested by every insect known to man so every little bit helps. 🙂 Maybe they won’t be so bad this summer because we had a real winter this year. 🙂

  3. Jean C. says:

    What a lovely outdoor space! Hope you can enjoy it soon. I’m taking allergy medicine every day now. It’s one pollen type after another. Stay well. You’ll be out there in no time.

  4. Clearissa Coward says:

    Hi Jean,

    Thank you for stopping by. I certainly hope this pollen war will be over soon. Right now, I go from my house to office and reversed. To the market and home and that is about it. It really affects my breathing because of asthma as well as my allergies. But I know this too shall pass. I hope you are enjoying your spring and before we both know it, the summer will be upon us. 🙂

  5. Vicky says:

    I have always wanted a deck or nice porch. Beautiful job decorating. I especially like the vibrant orange. Makes me think of spring. Winter has hung on here too. We just had a record snowfall here. Spring can’t come fast enough.

  6. Clearissa Coward says:

    Hi Vicky,

    I totally understand how you feel. We had temps at the freezing mark just last night. This is unheard of in NC but it’s been a very strange winter this year. We all wish for something I guess. I love my deck, but I wish for a large front porch. 🙂 Thank you so much for stopping by.

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